Right before the season started the Phillies acquired lefty Jack Taschner from the Giants in exchange for catcher Ronny Paulino. The Phils also have former BlueClaw JA Happ in the bullpen currently serving as a long reliever, plus Scott Eyre. Two more left-handers might not be that far off, and they’re both in the system and both former BlueClaws.
Mike Zagurski, began a rehab process last night from elbow surgery, throwing a perfect inning for Clearwater. Zagurski (career stats here) was a member of the 2006 SAL Champion BlueClaws. We spoke with Zagurski back in December for a blog Q&A you can read here.
“If it had to happen, I was fortunate that it was in spring training [in 2008],” said Zagurski, “We had Adam Eaton, Chad Durbin, and Tom Gordon all in camp. All of those guys had the same surgery and could tell me what I was going to feel, and what to expect during the rehab process.”
Meanwhile, Antonio Bastardo, who Baseball America ranked as the 11th best prospect in the system, has been converted to a relief pitcher and is currently working with Double-A Reading. Does he have a shot at the big leagues this year?
“He’s got some arm strength and a pretty good breaking ball, but he’s inconsistent with it,” general manager Ruben Amaro Jr. said. “But anybody who can throw between 90 and 93 as a lefthander and has the makings of a breaking ball, if he starts coming around more consistently, yeah, it’s a possibility.”